Thursday, March 22, 2018

Reducing Market Risk with FIAs

The S&P 500® index was up 19% for the year in 2017. This current run is the second-longest bull market in U.S. history, the longest was 113 months beginning in 1990. We are quickly approaching that record.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

FIA Sales Positioned for Rebound

Fixed index annuity sales are expected to rise in 2018, according to LIMRA as reported by InsuranceNewsNet,[1] on the news of an anticipated, now confirmed, delay of the applicability dates for full compliance with the Department of Labor fiduciary rule. As you will recall, parts of the rule involving reasonable compensation and impartial conduct standards went into effect on June 9, 2017. President Trump since taking office has sought a full scale review because the regulation may not be consistent with the policies of his administration. As a result of industry projections, LIMRA revised their forecast on 2018 FIA sales in spring of 2017 from being down 15-20% to actually growing by 5-10%[2] in fall of 2017.

Thursday, March 08, 2018

Build Links with CPAs to Better Serve Your Clients

With the new tax changes, your clients will likely have many questions concerning how they can correctly file their taxes, or about investment strategies that may need to be reviewed and perhaps adjusted. Most financial professionals (FPs) are not tax experts and refer their clients to a CPA. But how well do you know the CPAs in your network? Strong working relationships with tax professionals can prove to be beneficial to all parties throughout the year. Clients of CPAs are often in need of financial and investment advice, and clients themselves are often looking for a team of professionals that can holistically address their financial needs. Getting to know your clients’ CPAs in terms of their approach to tax planning and understanding your clients’ tax situations will help you implement financial strategies that can help to maximize their tax benefits and minimize their tax obligations. Ultimately this approach leads to reciprocity in referrals and happier clients who refer their friends, family, and co-workers to you.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

Taking Stock of the New Tax Landscape

To say it has been a rocky start to the Trump presidency is likely all in the eye of the beholder. Many of his major initiatives have not worked out (think building the wall and repealing Obamacare). However, one thing that the administration has now delivered on is the most substantial change to the tax code in over 30 years.

Friday, March 02, 2018

Make the First Quarter Your Best Quarter

When it comes to sales, we live in a “what have you done for me lately” world. Now that the calendar has flipped to a new year, we forget about last year’s goals and turn our focus to 2018. Every time a new year rolls around, companies have goals to achieve in order to please owners or stockholders. They also have specific times of the calendar year when they look to make a large dent in those goals. For example, in the retail industry, they plan on having a strong end of the year with holiday shopping to make up a large portion of their goals. That is why there are so many sales around Christmas. Other industries like car dealerships usually have quarterly and year-end goals and you can score the best deals at these times.

Living with the Fiduciary Rule After January 1, 2018

It was not that long ago when we were knee-deep in all things DOL – Department of Labor fiduciary rule – and its impact on our industry and livelihood. Positions were threatened to be eliminated, producers to be put out of business, and companies to not make it in the new world, while at the same time there were promises of new beginnings and opportunities. It was a time full of frenzy and turmoil as “experts” de-coded the rule and tried to assess its impact and meaning for each business. Some companies came together and some chose to part, all in the spirit of preparing for the implementation of the rule and surviving the new world.